According to Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev, the fight against climate change is not only a moral duty, but also necessitates rethinking of the approaches towards achieving economic growth.

Plevneliev made the statement on Monday during the summit held within the framework of the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21), which is taking place in Paris between November 30 and December 11.

The conference aims to reach a legally binding and universal agreement on climate between all the participating countries.

Plevneliev thinks that such an agreement will not only bring to a successful end two decades of negotiations on action against climate change, but will also accelerate the transformation of the world economy.

The Bulgarian president reminded that in the past years the price of “clean energy” has considerably decreased, which could allow for abandoning the old production models that relied on intensive exploitation of natural resources.

In his words, countering global warming requires changing our lifestyle and way of work and all countries have to make their contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

At the same time, countries could benefit from the economic opportunities created by a low carbon economy.

Plevneliev was firm that the new model of growth should not become a priority only of the developed countries and called for more investments and accelerated transfer of low carbon technologies to less developed countries.

The head of state assured that Bulgaria and the countries of Southeastern Bulgaria are part of the efforts on fulfilling the targets of the EU in the area of climate and energy for the period until 2030, which foresee the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 40 % until 2030.

As a member state of the EU, Bulgaria backs the creation of an open European energy union, which could be opened for participation of non-EU countries.

Plevneliev noted that the energy efficiency, accessibility and diversification are of key importance for the sustainable development.

He noted the efforts of Bulgaria in implementing the third national action plan on climate change as well as the fulfillment of an ambitious national programme on energy efficiency.

The president reminded that Bulgaria had managed to fulfill seven years earlier than scheduled the targets set by the EU on the introduction of renewable energy sources and at present their share in the energy mix reaches up to 20 %.

Furthermore, Bulgaria managed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20 % and to increase energy efficiency by 20 %.

In his words, the protection of ecosystems and biodiversity is fundamental to alleviating the effects of climate change.

Plevneliev pointed that Bulgaria ranks first in the EU in the number of protected areas under the NATURA 2000 network, which encompasses 30 % of the country’s territory.